Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Action X Firearms Database

For those who have been interested in the gun posts, and my attempt to wrap my head around firearms, I've uploaded my database to Google Drive. It is still a work in progress, with many empty fields to be filled (I maintain a massive commercial real estate database at work, so believe me, empty fields are a hateful thing to me).

The database is not a collection of every firearm that has ever existed - I've mostly focused on firearms from the "great powers" with a few other interesting specimens thrown in for good measure. It also doesn't attempt to categorize every variation on these firearms - I'm using it for a game, so I don't need to be that thorough.

A few explanations:

Nation might refer to the nation or origin or the nation most associated with the weapon - it's a mishmash at the moment

Era is broken down into Pre-Modern (i.e. before the main scope of the game), Victorian (1860-1901), Pulp (1910's to 1950's), Cold War (1960's to 1980's) and Modern (1990's to present).

Type is the general classification of the weapon. At the moment, I'm classifying anti-materiel weapons as sniper rifles.

Caliber is in inches.

Muzzle velocity is in feet/second. When italicized, it is a value I found for the ammunition, not the weapon - beggars can't be choosers.

Bullet weight is in grains; originally, I was using place holders here originally, so some of the values might be off for the type of ammunition indicated. I'll clean this up later.

TKOF is a calculated field - The Knock Out Factor - a useful abstraction for coming up with damage ranges.

Rate of fire is in rounds per minute.

Range is in yards, and (hopefully) represents the weapon's effective range, not maximum, though data sources are not always clear.

Ammo refers to the weapon's ammunition loading mechanism (or whatever the heck you want to call it).

Damage is a calculated field (essentially dividing TKOF by 20). For now, the damage values I'm going to use, based on the Modern SRD and different from previous posts, are as follows:

0 = 2d4
1 = 2d6
2 = 2d8
3 = 2d10
4 = 2d12

5 and beyond, I'm not sure yet, but 0-4 should take in most of the personal firearms, which is what I'm primarily interested in at the moment.

Cost is in dollars at the time the weapon was introduced - and this column is about 99% blank at this point. Ultimately, costs in the game are going to relate to how effective the weapon is - I just wanted a little info here on which to base my later calculations.

Rate of Fire - a calculated field showing rounds per 10-second round.

Ammunition is the type of ammunition used in some of the other fields (bullet weight, etc.). Many of these are blank because I didn't initially keep track of this data, so I'll need to go back through and fill these in.

Notes are just what you would think - notes.

The second Year column was just a convenience for me, so I could organize the weapons either alphabetically or by year introduced.

Since this isn't my only copy of the database, I'm going to open it to the public for editing. Be gentle with it. My one request - if you add or change data, please highlight the cell that you changed, as well as the cell containing the weapon's name, in yellow. It will make it easier for me to track down new information and put it into my other copy of the database. Please only make changes if you have a reliable source of data to work with, and please make a note of that source of data in the Notes field.

You can access the file HERE



  1. I'm not sure your damage system is granular enough, with basically every handgun under a .45/.44 magnum doing 0 (2d4) damage. Yet there is a big difference between a .22, .38, and .357 magnum, so maybe consider 1d4, 1d6 as well for lower powered handguns.

    While they might not be prestigious manufacturers, you are missing some very common ones, like Taurus (maker of the Judge shotshell revolver) and Hi Pointe (which produces the cheapest 9mm pistol for about $150).

    Similarly, while it's not "modern", pretty much the most popular pistol around in the US is the Colt M1911 design. Dozens of manufacturers make them (since it's out of patent) and should be represented on a modern list.

    I realize you probably don't want the list to get out of hand, but those are the sort of guns you'd find in a gun store or pawn shop.

    1. The Colt you mentioned is in the database. I added several of the Taurus firearms and a couple Hi-Point that I could find information on. Keep in mind, as regards "cheap" that the cost of the weapons in the game will be based on the statistic power of the weapon, much as they price things in D&D.

  2. I agree with Jeremy for the most part, but I feel the list is already out of hand.

    While the game will need a base list of firearms for each period, there needs to be a way for players and GMs to construct firearms both manufactured and custom based on a simple easy to use formula.

    We know for example revolvers have cylinders usually ranging from 5-10 rounds based on caliber and size of the gun. factors like barrel length, caliber, bullet type and powder charge effect range, damage.

    A local saying goes like this "The deer you just shot didn't know if you shot it with a Winchester .30-30, a Marlin .30-30 or the newest latest greatest .300 super Magnum." In the game the only real difference between a Luger, a Glock 17 and a Ruger P95 should be the magazine size and their eras of manufacture.

    Just my $00.02

  3. The game won't include all of these weapons. For each era I want to include in the main rulebook, I'll offer up a selection, mostly offering weapons in each category that are either famous/infamous or that offer up some statistical differences to keep things interesting. I agree that including all of these weapons in the game would be the equivalent of including 10 different short-bladed swords that all did 1d6 points of damage, rather than just calling them all "short swords".

    The database is as large as it is because I wanted a good base of data to inform my assumptions about firearms. I also figured it might come in useful for other folks.

  4. As for the comment about dmaage type variations within a TKOF/20 class, I'd suggest either not having a variation or else a very small one, as follows:

    1d8 (min 1, avg 4.5, max 8)
    1d6+1 (min 2, avg 4.5, max 7)
    2d4 (min 2, avg 5, max 8) (also curved rather than linear prob so more likely avg dmg)

    I'd consider these all equivalent, but the individual user might prefer one or the other. For example, 2d4 seems better but you're far less likely to get a high damage output to kill 1 HD in one shot. It's much more stable. I don't know what justification could be made for assigning each of these damages to any weapon since they're so similar. It also introduces complication without much benefit.

    As for ammo, I suggest giving a weight for Empty and for the Load. That is, if you have a loaded gun, it's Empty + Load. If you have six spare sets of ammo it's Load x 6. The individual bullet weight will probably never come up.

    Remember your Cost is not just what era it was introduced, but the cost of every weapon in each era. After all, a dollar was worth an awful lot less in 1990 than in 1910. Unless you have time-traveling in your game you might just use a cost factor based on era (set a cost for 1910 for all guns, but then say that 1930 cost is some multiplier) or else sort and print a list of all weapons available in the era you're playing and modify the Cost for the era on the sheet. In that case you could set past weapons as x1 multiplier in cost per era back - so in Modern 1990 if you want to buy a Victorian 1870 gun it would be

    (Gun Base Cost) x (Modern Coefficient) x (Antiquity)

    For example, $20 x 100 x 3 because the gun was originally $20, the Modern multiplier is x100, and the Victorian gun is three eras back from Modern.

    To keep people from doing the calculation, you'd sort and hide for Pre-Modern, set current date in a calculation section of your spreadsheet as Pre-Modern so it updates the cost field, and print.

    Then unhide, sort again for Pre-Modern and Victorian, adjust era to Victorian to auto adjust cost fields, and print again.


    Unfortunately this ignores the point made by Jeremy about companies still selling certain old guns, so those should ignore Antiquity coefficients.


    I would just say

    Pre-Modern has breach-load single-shot
    Victorian has revolvers and stationary-mount autofire
    Pulp has autofire and burst-fire rifles and semiauto pistols
    Cold War has somewhat refined versions of the above plus body armor
    Modern has somewhat refined body armor and some experimental weapons

    You'd also need to worry about various explosives available, spy gizmos, etc. It's a lot easier if you leave Modern out of it entirely.

    Pre-Modern = Andrew Jackson
    Victorian = Jesse James
    Pulp = Al Capone
    Cold War = James Bond


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